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Summer of concerts in the park

May 24, 2007|by JULIE E. GREENE

MARTINSBURG, W.Va. - School's not out yet in Berkeley County, W.Va., but a sure sign of summer arrives tonight with the beginning of the Concerts in the Park at War Memorial Park.

The concert series has been an annual tradition for several years, attracting 300 to 500 people when the weather's nice, said Toni Saylor, marketing administrator with the Martinsburg-Berkeley County Parks & Recreation Board.

The board provides many activities for area youth, while the series of free Thursday evening concerts reaches a broader audience, including residents from the Tri-State area, Saylor said.

This year features several returning acts and a new act for the series, Rendezvous from Bunker Hill, W.Va. Rendezvous performs music that spans generations, including jazz, country and soft rock, Saylor said.

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The concert series kicks off tonight at 7 p.m. with the Berkeley County String Program.

Tonight's concert will have performances by the first-year string students, beginning orchestra students, advanced orchestra students and the high school orchestra that includes wind and percussion as well as strings, said Eva Price, program director.

High school orchestra students will perform the first movement of Ludwig van Beethoven's Symphony No. 5, she said.

The series includes local groups that perform jazz, blues, bluegrass and patriotic music, as well as the Nashville band Shane Douglas & The Money Makers playing blues and classic rock, Saylor said.

The bands perform for at least an hour on a covered stage with listeners sitting in bleacher seating or on the lawn in chairs or on blankets. If it rains, the band can turn around on the stage to face the main pavilion so listeners are sheltered.

But it doesn't matter too much where listeners sit.

The bands can be heard from throughout the 19.5-acre park so people can listen while playing miniature golf in the park, Saylor said.




If you go ...



WHAT: 2007 Concerts in the Park

WHEN: 7 p.m. Thursdays, today through Aug. 9

WHERE: War Memorial Park, Martinsburg, W.Va.

COST: Free

DIRECTIONS: From Hagerstown, take Interstate 81 south to King Street exit (Exit 13) for Martinsburg, W.Va. Turn left on King Street. At Eddie's Tire, turn left on Tennessee Avenue. War Memorial Park is five to six blocks down on the left.

MORE: The park has handicapped-accessible restrooms and a concession stand that sells hot food, snacks, ice cream and beverages. For more information, call the Martinsburg-Berkeley County Parks & Recreation Board at 304-264-4842 or go to www.mbcparks-rec.org/special_concerts.html




The 2007 Concerts in the Park schedule



May 24 - Berkeley County String Program performs classical and contemporary music

May 31 - The South Mountain String Band from Hedgesville performs foot-stomping mountain music with dancing by the Rock Candy Cloggers

June 7 - Shane Douglas & The Money Makers from Nashville, Tenn., perform blues and classic rock

June 14 - Williamsport Community Band from Williamsport, Md., performs patriotic music.

Elks Lodge 778 will conduct a Flag Day presentation at 6 p.m.

June 21 - The Music Makers from Martinsburg perform jazz and big-band music

June 28 - The Blue & Grey Chorus from the Inwood area performs patriotic and barbershop music and hymns

July 5 - KoKo Blue from Washington County, Md., performs rhythm and blues

July 12 - Stoney Creek Bluegrass Band from Hedgesville performs bluegrass

July 19 - Martinsburg Jazz Orchestra with members from the Falling Waters area performs swing and contemporary big-band jazz

July 26 - Rendezvous, from Bunker Hill, performs jazz, country and soft rock

Aug. 2 - The U.S. Army band The Volunteers, performs pop, country and light jazz

Aug. 9 - Patent Pending of Inwood performs bluegrass

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